Northwestern University Joins LSST Corporation

November 8, 2013 - Northwestern University (NU) has joined LSST Corporation, bringing the total number of LSSTC Institutional Members to 39.  NU’s Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA) led the membership petition, which promoted its strong focus on astrophysical research and broad interdisciplinary involvement with a wide community of researchers.  Faculty and postdoctoral fellows at CIERA work on a wide range of LSST-related topics: from stellar binary mergers and LIGO to transient events, AGN surveys and characterization, dense stellar dynamics, galaxy clusters and gravitational lensing, planetary transits, and other solar system transients.  In addition, a number of particle physics faculty members are interested in joining LSST, contributing in the area of statistics and big-data challenges.  LSST Data Management Project Scientist Mario Juric can expect a big audience when he presents Large Synoptic Survey Telescope: Entering the Era of Petascale Optical Astronomy at CIERA on November 12.    

Neighborhood Watch on Cerro Pachón

LSST and the Government of Chile are working together to minimize the impact of construction on Cerro Pachón's thriving ecosystem. From the beginning of LSST’s relationship with Chile, the protection of threatened species – and in particular the relocation and replanting of flora in need of preservation – has been part of the site development plan. Today, within the on-site wild gardens, tens of endangered Sandillón cactus seedlings are thriving after being nurtured from seeds harvested prior to site leveling. The capture and relocation of vulnerable animal species also took place at that time, including this black-green tree iguana (Liolaamus nigrovirdis) shown here being held by a botanical specialist from the University of La Serena.

Welcome Sandra Ortiz

Friday September 13, 2013 - LSST is pleased to announce Sandra Ortiz as the LSST Project Office (LSSTPO) Administrative Assistant. Sandra is responsible for the majority of daily office administration tasks such as coordinating project-wide travel arrangements, managing calendars, and organizing meeting arrangements. She comes to LSST after several years working as the Assistant to the Vice President for the Muscular Dystrophy Association National Headquarters in Tucson. Sandra’s office is room N515 in the LSSTPO wing of Steward Observatory's fifth floor.

Successful Database Architecture Review

August 30, 2013

The sign on Jeff Kantor's door says it all. In preparation for the upcoming October Final Design Review, LSST has had 14 external reviews in the past 12 weeks with another 5 reviews scheduled for the next six weeks. The most recent of these reviews, the LSST Data Management Database Architecture Review, took place August 6-7 at SLAC with a very favorable outcome. This review examined the current LSST database design, including its distributed/parallel architecture, partitioning, indexing, fault tolerance, data distribution, and schema evolution as well as the physical schema. Reviewers concluded the database architecture is technically appropriate for the project's requirements and feasible in the time and budget available.

Joint Technical Meeting Group Photo

Wednesday August 14, 2013 - More than 80 LSST team members attended the Joint Technical Meeting this week at the Omni Tucson National Resort. The August 12-15 workshop brings together the distributed team of managers, scientists, and engineers who contribute to the programmatic, design, and technical work of the LSST Project. In particular, the team is tackling interfaces and other cross-subsystem topics in preparation for the National Science Foundation Final Design Review in October. The agenda also includes external reviews of Image Simulation and the Safety Program later in the week. Here, the team poses for a group photo at the edge of the Omni golf course on Tuesday afternoon. Click the image for a larger view.

M2 Optical Fabrication Contract Awarded to ITT Exelis

July 12, 2013 -- ITT Exelis has been awarded the optical fabrication contract for LSST’s 3.5m secondary mirror assembly ( The two-phase contract was awarded by AURA on behalf of the LSST project. The first phase supports vendor-specific engineering design activities targeted at risk reduction. The second phase includes the optical fabrication, testing, and integration of the finished mirror into the LSST-supplied M2 cell assembly.

LSST Mirror Status - Thinking Outside/Inside the Box

The unique LSST M1/M3 mirror surfaces are nearing perfection. Both mirror surfaces are being carefully polished and optically tested with completion anticipated by the end of December 2013. Testing has transitioned from the realm of mechanical measurement to optical measurement as the remaining deviations from the mirror’s perfect smooth shape are now on the scale of nanometers instead of microns.

DM Awarded XSEDE Computing Resource Allocation

Friday June 21, 2013 - LSST Data Management was awarded a computing resource allocation from the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) in June 2013.  This award of 530,000 compute service units and 148 terabytes of storage is a renewal of previous awards that LSST has been granted by XSEDE.  It allows DM to continue the larger scale runs associated with the sequence of Data Challenges and large-scale middleware and infrastructure tests that are necessary in preparation for the Construction phase of LSST.  This allocation will be in effect fo

Final Design Review - Save the Date

The Final Design Review (FDR) for the LSST project has been scheduled for the week of October 21, 2013 in Tucson, Arizona.  This review must be completed successfully before the National Science Foundation (NSF) can release funds to start construction.  And, of course, Congress also must appropriate the funds before the NSF can release them.  We’re expecting a review format and schedule (Monday noon to Friday noon) much like the August 2011 NSF Preliminary Design Review.

Inaugural Meeting of LSST@Illinois

LSST Institutional Members from Illinois met at Argonne National Laboratory on May 30 for the inaugural meeting of LSST@Illinois.  Organized by Salman Habib, the meeting was attended by about 40 individuals from Adler Planetarium, Argonne, Fermilab, University of Illinois/NCSA and Northwestern University.  Many in the group "bonded" previously at a Washington, DC LSST Board Meeting and decided to continue their discussion of current projects, what each institution would individually like to get out of LSST, and how they can work together to help LSST@Il


Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Support Agreement No. 1202910, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

Contact   |   Employment   |   LSST Corporation

Admin Login

Back to Top